I have decided that it is the battle cry of the modern, over privileged, white man, and I think that it is a complete and total load of crap.
Willpower is the word that people who are intensely attached to their accomplishments use when they want to dismiss people who are vastly less advantaged than they are.
Feeling fat? You just need some willpower. Stop eating ice cream all of the time and sitting on the couch watching TV. It is as simple as that.
Always broke? You just need to muster up some willpower and work extra hard at your job, and resist that subterranean desire to buy another pair of shoes. Then you won’t be broke. You just need some more will power.
Addiction problems. Muster up some will power you lousy excuse for a human being. Can’t you see that you are hurting the people all around you? A good dose of guilt and a little willpower are the perfect solution to any addiction!
Depressed? Will you just aren’t using your god given willpower to force those negative thoughts right out of your simple little human brain. Successful people don’t get depressed. Depression is for losers who don’t have any willpower.
So here is the thing: I have never heard a single human being that has come out of a disadvantaged situation and found a way to raise themselves up even utter the word willpower.
The majority of overweight and malnourished people in this country find themselves in that situation because they have absolutely no nutritional education, healthy food is vastly more expensive than unhealthy food, and because every grocery store is filled with toxic foods that our government lies to us about. Just how exactly is willpower supposed to help out in that situation?
People who do not grow up in homes where they receive absolutely no positive parenting or support in any way from their family members have no concept of how difficult it is to gain the confidence to earn a healthy living in this country. If your father told you that you were a piece of shit and that you would never amount to anything everyday of your life before you escaped your situation, how successful do you think that you would be? Does willpower magically endorse the abused with a sense of self-love?
Addiction is a disease spawned out of complete and total misery. How damned effective is it to take a person who pretty much would be perfectly content to die and seek to make them better by piling guilt upon their shoulders and accuse them of not trying hard enough?
Depression is also a disease that people in this country refuse to recognize as an actual and serious medical condition. Telling the victims of depression that they just don’t know how to dig in their heels and power on is a pretty good way to encourage them to commit suicide.
So, I am not saying that if you have ever told anyone that they just need to use a little willpower that you are a complete and total asshole, I am, however, saying that it is the absolute wrong thing to do. I am saying that you can expect the exact opposite result from what you seek to inspire when you spew elitist jargon at a person who is in need of help. Telling someone that they need willpower reflects perfectly how ignorant you are to the challenges that they are facing in life.
Telling someone to use a little willpower is the exact opposite of showing a little compassion. It is about time that we start acting like the members of the evolved society that we claim to live in.
Telling an acquaintance that they need to muster up some willpower is like telling a homeless person on the street that they need to go get a job.
They are not the one with the problem, you are. Your soul is in need.